Internet-based television service Joost on Monday launched its software for Mac and Windows, making the peer-to-peer technology widely available to the public for the first time. With Joost version 1.0, users can now download the free software without being “invited” by a friend. With Joost version 1.0, users can now download the free software without being “invited” by a friend. They can transmit video using peer-to-peer technology (P2P), the same approach used to launch the Skype internet calling service and Kazaa, the music-sharing website.
P2P is a method of distributing data in which multiple computers each transmit and receive information.
Sharing the computing power and band width of its users instead of filtering everything through a central data server can lead to better transmission quality, particularly as the number of users goes up.
Founded by Skype’s Janus Friis and Kazaa’s Niklas Zennström, the service got a shot in the arm earlier this summer when it raised $45 million US from five investors, including CBS Corp. and Viacom Inc. The company has also signed deals with other big media players such as Turner Broadcasting System, Sony Pictures Television, Major League Baseball and the National Hockey League.
Overall, Joost says it has 150 channels of video. The mainstream approach is different from that of Kazaa, which has run into trouble with the music industry over users sharing music downloads for free.
While Joost focuses on bringing television programming to the internet, much of the move among technology firms has been to find a way to bring the internet to television in the form of set-top boxes such as Apple Inc.’s Apple TV.